Clinical Health Updates

Iron for nonanemic pregnant women not beneficial

Clinical Question:
Is iron supplementation of nonanemic pregnant women beneficial to them or their newborns?

Bottom Line:
Iron supplementation in pregnant women with a hemoglobin level of at least 13.2 is not beneficial and may be harmful.

Reference:
Ziaei S, Norrozi M. Faghihzadeh S, Jafarbegloo E. A randomised placebo-controlled trial to determine the effect of iron supplementation on pregnancy outcome in pregnant women with greater than or equal to haemoglobin 13.2 g/dl. BJOG 2007;114:684-688.

Study Design:
Randomized controlled trial (double-blinded)

Synopsis:
The authors studied the effect of iron supplementation on pregnancy outcome in pregnant women with haemoglobin (Hb) > or = 13.2 g/dl. They did a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial in a routine health services. Seven hundred and twenty-seven pregnant women with Hb > or = 13.2 g/dl in the early stage of the second trimester participated on this trial. Each woman took one tablet of 50 mg of ferrous sulphate daily in the case group (n = 370) or placebo in the control group (n = 357) throughout pregnancy. While there were no significant differences in demographic and obstetric characteristics between the two groups before any intervention, small-for-gestational-age birth rate and the number of women with hypertension disorder increased significantly in the case group in comparison with the control group (57 [15.7%] versus 36 [10.3%], P = 0.035, 10 [2.7%] versus 3 [8%], P = 0.05, respectively).